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 Forum index » Reviews, Editorials and Commentary » Commentary and Editorials
American Idol
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dmosc



Joined: Jun 23, 2003
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 3:01 pm    Post subject: American Idol Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Ok, so I have no interest in it at all but my wife turned on the first show and for some reason didn't change the channel about a month ago and it's been stuck on my tv (despite my objections) for it's entire run this season. My commentary is more on why it is popular these days to listen to singers, who by a generous comment would be "average" on television? Granted I did watch the 12 male finalists go at it and 2 or 3 of them had a professional level voice but nothing that I would consider memorable or impressive. Apparently this is the best year ever too??? How come we have starving musicians all around the world who can outclass these "teen stars" musically in every sence of style, emotion, technicality, and ESPECIALLY talent that people would want to listen to these wanna-be stars? I try to convince myself it's just a reality show and people are more interested in the drama of who will make it through and who will say bad things about who than the music but at it's core, the show has an aweful lot of singing (if you can call it that). We don't have an Ed Sullivan show anymore. Hell, nobody even watches mtv anymore. American idol is "the show" for music on tv these days. How far we've fallen...

I feel like radio has become a place where people want to hear the same songs and expect stations to play only songs from a very narrow and often overplayed genre. TV has also become so fast paced that nobody has the patience for a 3 minute song or even music video!

Maybe this isn't germain to electronic music but if america isn't ready for a talented 30 year old singer's voice (you have to be young to be an american idol) that could take your breath away then experimental music may have an ever growing hill to climb
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

This is damned close to "Rollerball", isn´t it?



We have the same show here. Hmm.. didn´t the norwegian Kurt Nilsen win the WorId Idol thingie a year ago?

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mosc
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I haven't allowed myself to watch this program. So far I have suceeded.

The best thing I've heard on the radio lately is on an AM station that barely comes in from Hamilton, Ontario. They play old radio programs from the 30s, 40s, and early 50s. I've heard Burns and Allen, Jack Benny, Amos and Andy, The Lone Ranger, and lots of interesting dramas I had never heard of. All are uniformly excellent. The sound effects are magnificent.

Oh, there is one bright spot on American media these days of course -I love the Phil Hendie show... Laughing

http://www.philhendrieshow.com

Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

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The Why Project



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I don't think these shows are there to bring us top quality, lasting talent in
the first place... not even from the point of view of the producers of the
show (Simon Fuller, the once Spice Girls manager)...

Shelf-life of the acts coming out of these shows is extremely short, so it
all comes down to sucking the consumer dry as quickly as possibe...
So it probably comes down to this:
1) The average television watcher loves this type of television... it's
"tv-emoción"... Nothing as good for your self esteem as seeing all those
"poor" guys and girls being teared to pieces off by a "heartless" Simon
Cowell (who by the way is right almost all of the time anyway).
2) As people love this type of television, lots of them are going to watch,
so it's certainly a viable product to broadcasts for the networks.
3) The producers then earn a lot of money from licensing, and product
placement (the empty Coca-Cola glasses on the judges table for instance).
4) So, the end product (the winning candidates single/album) is probably
the smallest part of the profit, and also the smallest risk the producers
are taking. If it sells, fine. If it doesn't, no harm, the cash is already in the
pocket!

Nonetheless, from time to time, it's hilarious television. I can't feel much
sympathy for people who think they are great, while in fact, they're not,
and it's great to see them making an ass of themselves.
Just don't watch expecting something great to happen on a musical level,
because it won't. Great musicians that combine great talent, great
character and real new ideas won't make it to the final of such a show.
That's too much of a risk.

Regards,

The Why Project
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Mohoyoho



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Alright. I'm going to come off looking like a fool here, but here it goes:

I watched the last half of last season's Idol and (gulp!) liked it. Here's my reasoning: Most of the remaining singers by that time had talent. I enjoyed watching them improve each week. Simon was always right. But most importantly, it was refreshing to see people sing. So many of today's pop singers can't, and those that can, oversing. ie Aguillara. Today the emphasis is not on singing. Rather there is more importance placed on performance and image, which means we have to have a symetrical number of provocatively dressed dancers behind the star, and have over-produced choregraphy to match. The songs have also taken a backseat to the performance. That's why we get these Britney's with insipid songs.

So to get back to Idol. You are actually seeing vocalists who get eliminated if they try and oversing. There are no over-the-top dancers or choreography. And the songs sung usually are well-written. And there is no lip-syncing.

No, they aren't the best singers in the world, but they are trying their hardest. And if you notice, the previous winners are presented without all the trashy glitz that we have become accustomed to. Idol has put the emphasis on the singer and the song rather than the trashy image (Ie Aguillara, Speers, Jackson, et al).

I can't believe I have defended Idol.

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elektro80
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Idol/American Idol is just a TV show. When it sells it is called "good television" If it is not, it iwill disappear. I am completely unable to build up any interest. Sorry. That said, I am also completey unable to judge if it is good or not, and I reckon that is irrelevant as long as enough people watch it.

I did watch parts of the World Idol thingie where Kurt won. That was hilarious. The kid can actually sing too. It was still dull.

However, I am now listening all my old Amos and Andy episodes I have on my iPod. Great fun. http://www.otr.com/amosandy.html

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Those are hilariaous. Don't you remember in the 60s when this was declaired to be racist and if you liked it you were a racist?

So, can you get Phil Hendrie in Norway - without paying for that cheapstakes web site?

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elektro80
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

..suddenly everyone hated Amos and Andy. I once read an insane essay written by some sociology student about this series. It was supposed to be the most racist thing on radio ever. However, all those OTR collectors kept this alive and now we still have em. I haven´t the lot complete yet though.. Sad..

I reckon I will have to buy a Phil Hendrie CD in orer to hear what this is about. I guess he is not broadcasting on shortwave?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Shortwave? Is there anything on short wave any more? I used to listen all the time but not any more. The BBC doesn't even beam world service to North America anymore.
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2005 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

They killed the shortwave brodcasting of BBC Worldservice. I remember hearing the HGTTG on shortwave in the laste 70s.
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Static Strobe Emitter



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 25, 2005 10:06 pm    Post subject: oh btw. Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

i puke on "talent-hunting" musicshows,
i really dont like them. its not because the music mostly
suck BIGASS, but rather that the judges treat the people like
dirt. those judges seem to think they are some sort of gods or
something, it really makes me upset.

now im upset =(( see what you did to me???
gimme a cookie and im happy again Laughing
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Kassen
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 26, 2005 7:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I like televisions, they are good to play console games on and occasionally I use them to display dvd movies. The fun bit about not watching programs on them is when you visit friends that do. You´ll be required to watch the tv with them. I honestly can´t keep the serious stuff and the parodies apart anymore. I saw one of these talent shows once and couldn´t stop laughing, thought the artist had brilliantly exposed modern media for what it was, then I was told this was real. I thought my friends were trying to fool me, took about ten minutes and a couple of tv guides to convince me.

Television scares me; ratings are the purest form of democracy we have, not diluted by budget like sales figures are, the same people voting for the politicians that rule us are the people causing these shows to be on TV.

I read in a newspaper that the Dutch prime minister had praised televison as a medium for being "a great uniter of the people". This was after a incident that was aparently a rather large deal on the Dutch television, involving some "terrorists" and a few truckloads of riot police. This was -reportedly- a very big deal according to the dutch television. As chance would have it it happened one street away from my house and I would´ve slept through it hadn´t I been called by lots of people that wondered wether I was still alive. The same prime minister said on tv that my ´hood needs a more friendly, social, atmosphere. Had he lived here he might well´ve been the only neighbour I had that I didn´t greet on the street.

Television scares me.

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mosc
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2005 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kassen wrote:
.

Television scares me.


Scares me too! alien

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dmosc



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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 5:16 pm    Post subject: Re: oh btw. Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Static Strobe Emitter wrote:
its not because the music mostly
suck BIGASS, but rather that the judges treat the people like
dirt. those judges seem to think they are some sort of gods or
something, it really makes me upset


I don't understand. I had to watch it again and the guy was actually quite nice, despite telling 5 of the people they are outclassed by your average karikie singer, WHICH IS TRUE. Do we have to be nice and say "wow, you did a good job! You only sang 1 note that was a quarter tone sharp at the top of your lungs making my dog wince".

I suppose it's too much to ask to actually have talent. Do they just ban people with music education from these things or something?
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2005 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Tell people crap is good long enough and you'll be able to sell them dirt at twice the price...

Besides, producers sit around *trying* to think of something NEW all day long, but it is always based on something that was done before (if it wasn't they'd be artists themselves, and not producers!).
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2005 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

When you look at musical performance as a competition, then almost everyone is a looser, especially the audience.

When you look at musical perfromance as a product, then everyone is reduced to a consumer or a commodity.

When you look at musicial performance as personal expression and you listen without judgement or biases from the past, then everyone wins and life is enriched.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2005 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

mosc wrote:
When you look at musical performance as a competition, then almost everyone is a looser, especially the audience.

When you look at musical perfromance as a product, then everyone is reduced to a consumer or a commodity.

When you look at musicial performance as personal expression and you listen without judgement or biases from the past, then everyone wins and life is enriched.

is it yours or by Confucius Question Twisted Evil

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2005 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2005 11:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

seraph wrote:
is it yours or by Confucius Question Twisted Evil


I phrased that one all by myself, but the ideas are as old as time.

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